"Extra Virginity" by Tom Mueller
Coming Clean

How Much is it Worth to You?

This is someplace where I might be accused of being a bit of a broken record.  I find myself constantly amazed by the amount we are charged in the supermarket for labor we could just as well do at home.  On previous occasions, I've written about $100 Onions, and Saving Money on Groceries.  This time, it's the difference in cost between split chicken breasts with the skin and bone in versus boneless, skinless chicken breasts.

On a recent trip to our local store, I found split chicken breasts sold at $8.80 per kilo ($3.93/pound) and right beside them boneless, skinless chicken breasts at $18.08 per kilo ($8.07/pound).  I bought a package of two split breasts to see how long it would take me to skin and bone them at home.  The answer, 2 minutes and 17 seconds.

Here's the math:

  • 0.662 kg Split chicken breasts @ $8.80/kg = $5.83
  • Yield after removing skin and bones = 0.412 kg
  • Scrap 0.250 kg (saved for making stock)
  • 0.412 kg skinless, boneless chicken breasts @ $18.08/kg = $7.45
  • Savings $7.45 - $5.83 = $1.62
  • Equivalent hourly "wage" $1.62 X 60 / 2.28 = $42.66

Calculated as an annual wage, that would come out to nearly $89,000 per year. 

I don't know about you, but it sort of galls me to pay such an exorbitant mark-up to save a couple of minutes work once a week.  How much is it worth to you?

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